Alexa Stevenson | September 12, 2013
The eclectic and colorful Italian designer Paola Navone has had her hands on just about everything: interiors, lamps, furnishings, clothing, fabric—you name it, she’s probably done a version of it. This fall she hits the floors of contemporary houseware retail giant Crate and Barrel, with the Exclusive Paola Navone Collection Only at Crate and Barrel. The collection, available online and in all stores after September 13, consists of over 140 items in everything imaginable for the home: tabletop pieces, rugs, lighting, furnishings, textiles and decorative objects.
“I’ve been a client of Crate & Barrel for years—I could ruin myself in one visit if allowed myself! Marta [Calle, President and Chief Merchant of Crate and Barrel] came to Milano to my office for coffee, so we talked and we exchanged information, but I thought that would be the end of it… you know how that happens—people just disappear. But only three days after she came back—she called right away—and after 10 days we had a contract,” says Navone. Calle adds, “We are thrilled to to collaborate with Paola on this exclusive, affordably-priced collection, which reflects our shared values of casual elegance in entertaining and everyday living.”
The heart of the collection is Navone’s relaxed take on tabletop. Glazed pieces are marked with bold strokes and freeform squiggles in shades of blue that hint at the colors of the Mediterranean. She transforms white ceramic dinnerware into anything but ordinary with organic shapes and textural Baroque-like scroll and hand-woven rope details. Handcrafted glassware is thick and bubbled and rimmed in cobalt, reminding again of the Mediterranean sea. “I wanted to craft items around an experience, like having a friend over for dinner,” says the designer.
Navone’s vibrant palette and unexpected touches expand beyond tabletop. A woven willow shade--every so slightly resembling a straw beach hat--dangles from a red cord. Bright red aluminium candlesticks holders appear to be the designer’s doodles come to life. The collection also features an impressive array of dining furniture including a woven houndstooth dining chair that sits on rattan legs and a table featuring a sleek white top sitting on twisted aluminum legs.
Crate and Barrel plans to roll out two new collections next year. “I’m always going going,” says Navone. “I was late to my own opening here at Crate and Barrel. I’m designing the interiors for the Como Miami [Hotel]. And we are already working on the new collection for Crate and Barrel, an outdoor collection.”